Sunday, April 26, 2009

Alot has happened since my last update; I had finished stitching the hull but when I tried to attach the transom I had a setback. Some of the planks were twisting severely to attach to the transom. I attributed this to distortion caused from the weight of the hull sitting on sawhorses.  I removed the transom and the temporary frames and strated building a strongback in order to build the boat inverted. The first photo shows the strongback and the uprights to which the frames and transom are attached. I removed the stitches from the top four planks on each side, laid the bottom six planks on top of the frames, and restitched the hull. I began to reattach the transom, this time staring at the keel and working out to the gunnels and discovered the real cause of my transom problems. Apparently my planks were each a millimeter or so too wide as the top edge of the gunnel ended up a 1/4" higher than the top of the transom. In my first attempt I started with the gunnels and tried working in toward the center which started forcing a twist into the third and fourth planks. The wood on top of the gunnels was shaved off using a block plane. Last weekend I began the process of gluing all of the joints in the planks between the stitches with System Three's EZ Fillet. It took the better part of Saturday and Sunday to complete this step. I also crawled under the hull and glued the transom and bow together as there was not enough gap to get the glue into on the outside of the hull. I let the glue cure a few days and removed all of the stitches on Tuesday night. Wednesday and Thursday evenings were spent glueing the gaps and holes from all the tyraps that were used as stitches. At the top right of the picture the dark brown fillet mixture is visible in some of the holes. Friday and most of yesterday were spent sanding the hull joints in preparation for glassing. I did take a four hour break at noon to attend a crawfish
boil at my brother's house.

The two photos above were taken this morning. They show the hull sanding complete. If you look closely you can also see the 6 oz. biaxal tape I added to the keel and around the transom joint. I also coated the rest of the hull with clear epoxy last night.

The next photos show the glass on the portside in place and wet out with epoxy. The photo on the right shows my brother Ricky, (on the left) and his brother in law Jeff (on the right) smoothing out the glass on the starboard side so we could wet it out. Have the extra help available made the process go smoother. It also helped that Jeff lays up fiberglass as his day job. In all we laid 11 yards of 6oz. glass with 72 oz. of epoxy. My cost for this extra labor, 43 lbs. of crawfish for yesterday's crawfish boil.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Yesterday I continued the process of stitching hull panels. After completing the fourth pair I decided to add the the temporary frames to help make sure the hull took the correct shape.
The first two photos are before and after shots of the first frame.  The stern end of the boat was very flat prior to the frames being tied in place. Plainly visible in the first photo are the short pieces of dowel rod under the tyraps to help align the panel edges. They do help in this regard, and I found if the panels were still uneven after the stitch was tightened they could be rolled slighly in one direction or other to straighten things out.

The third photo shows three frames along with the fifth and sixth pair of hull planks in place. The foward frame (nearest the camera will have to be removed and retied because I forgot to wrap the edge in packing tape. I don't want this thing epoxied to the boat. 

The last two pictures show the seventh and final hull panel in place. Today I took a day off from boat building and went fishing with my brother and his father-in-law. Monday I am off and hope to get the transom in place so I can start gluing the boat together. 


Thursday, April 9, 2009

Starting to take shape

Started stitching hull panels today, the picture shows two pairs of panels loosely stitched together.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          

In the next photo the third pair of panels have been added, the bow has been pulled together and the stitches have been pulled snug. Short lengths of dowel are put inside the zip ties to help the panel edges align. Tomorrow I will continue adding the hull panels, and if all goes well I will attach the transom with temporary screws.                                                                                     

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

The end of the beginning

All the panels were drilled for stitching holes over the weekend. Also cut the three pieces for transom and coated them with unthickened epoxy.Glued the three layers of the plywood transom together last night.The picture shows the small wood blocks I used to keep the layers aligned while gluing. they are wrapped with packing tape to keep them from becoming part of the boat The next step is to disassemble the layout table to make room for stitching the hull.